It Pays to Work Hard

When James Garfield (later President of the U.S.) was principal of Hiram College in Ohio, a father asked him if the course of study could be simplified so that his son might be able to go through by a shorter route. “Certainly.” Garfield replied. “But it all dep … More


As Christians it is easy to be persuaded that success is measured in the world’s terms. The more we get the more successful we will be. Henry Ford said, “Success is a matter of adjusting one’s efforts to overcome obstacles and one’s abilities to give the service needed by others.” In other words, success begins by giving and not by getting. Perhaps giving was Henry Ford’s key to success. His quote was very similar to what Jesus said, that success is service and leadership is servanthood.

Solomon urged his readers in this passage not to sit around looking for the most opportune time to work but to be diligent constantly (vv. 3,4). The future is out of one’s control as much as the falling of rain and the uprooting of a tree. He urges the farmer to sow the seed all day long, because they do not know which sowing will succeed. He uses two examples, one from the maritime trade (vv. l,2) and one from farming (vv. 3,4,6). He urges people to make diligent, prudent, diversified investment of their energies and resources, recognizing that all is in God’s sovereign control.

In the first ten years of the twentieth century, the U.S. government officials temporarily closed the patent office because they thought nothing else could be invented. At that time two million patents had been issued. By l96l we had passed the three million mark and by l977 we had passed the four million mark.  From this scripture Solomon is simply saying that there is room for new ideas and new ways to serve Christ.


I hope to enjoy life now, but not do anything physically, morally or spiritually that will prevent me from enjoying life when I am older.

Ecclesiastes 11:1-10 (English Standard Version)

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